By ELIOT CAROOM
BP, Enbridge and other companies returned workers to
production platforms today after Tropical Storm Karen was
downgraded to a depression and passed by offshore assets on its
way toward the mainland.
Karens maximum sustained winds fell to about 30
miles/hour (48 kilometers) with the storms center no
longer well- defined, the National Hurricane Center said in a
bulletin. Karen may produce rainfall of 1 to 3 inches over
parts of the central Gulf Coast and southeastern US through
tomorrow, the report said.
You cant even find the main area, the main
center on satellite anymore, Shawn ONeil, a
Slidell, Louisiana-based meteorologist for the National Weather
Service said by telephone today. It stayed south of the
coast, did not make landfall, and its moving due east
Before Karen was downgraded, the storms threat shut
almost 62% of Gulf oil production, some 866,000 bpd of oil, and
48% of natural gas output, or 1.8 billion cubic feet daily, as
of Saturday, according to the US Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement. Those
numbers were cut as workers returned to their platforms.
Chevron's 330,000-bpd refinery in Pascagoula,
Mississippi, returned to normal, the company said. Royal Dutch
Shell had cut rates at its 85,000 bpd plant in Mobile,
Alabama, and Motiva Enterprises reduced output at the 250,000
bpd Norco, Louisiana, refinery due to delays caused by
Karen, Shell said on its website yesterday.
Karen was the 11th named storm of the Atlantic hurricane
season, which began June 1 and ends Nov. 30.